6 Reasons For Documenting Your Collection

Over the years, we all accumulate objects that are important to us. Some are carefully chosen to enhance an existing collection, while others have been inherited or received as gifts. Whether your possessions hold monetary value, historical significance, or sentimental value, you should maintain thorough records about the objects for several important reasons.


In the event of theft, loss, or damage; proof of ownership, along with detailed information of the items in question, must be provided to your insurer. This will help them assign value to the collection and compensate you for your losses. Furthermore, in the event of theft, detailed information will help police investigate, identify, and hopefully return your stolen valuables.


Speaking of insurance, there are situations in which your insurance company will require a professional appraisal prior to insuring your collection. In such cases, detailed documentation will spare the appraiser from additional tasks, saving you money, since most appraisers charge an hourly fee for their services. Moreover, the more relevant details and documentation you have, the more accurate the final appraisal will be.

RELATED ARTICLE: 7 Things to Know About Professional Appraisals


Often times, family heirlooms and other items are sold or disposed of because subsequent generations are unaware of their value – monetary or sentimental. In addition to standard documentation, keeping detailed records of an object’s importance to the family is yet another reason for keeping your records current and complete.

RELATED ARTICLE: Tracking Family History


We’re not eternal. Someone other than you will be the future caretaker of your most prized possessions. In addition to standard documentation, recording your decisions about which objects you will leave to specific heirs; and why, is also an important consideration for documenting your collection. Besides, don’t you want someone else to understand, care for, and enjoy your collection as much as you do?


If you ever choose to sell or gift items to a museum or other institutions, record keeping will come in handy. Keeping detailed records of an object from the time of acquisition to its sale or donation, will provide you with the necessary documentation for tax purposes.


Thorough documentation is an important part of caring for your collection. Such documentation enriches an object’s intrinsic value, gives it meaning and context, and results in a stronger understanding of its uniqueness–enhancing your own and others’ enjoyment of your collection.

RELATED ARTICLE: Collector’s Guide to Record Keeping

Record keeping is only as good as the information recorded, so it’s important to keep your records current, complete, and securely stored. With RelicRecord.com, an object’s history can be recorded, along with pictures and other information relevant to the object. To get started, sign up today!


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